Top Prospects Flood Virginia, Jamal Murray Buzzer Beat and More…
HAMPTON,VA–Back from Boo Williams and it’s back to player evaluations and national player rankings for the 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018 classes.
Canadian Cadets In Full Affect
More than half of last year’s Cadet National Team members were scattered across various teams in attendance; each of these individuals finished off with a strong impact on their respective teams. Top 5 nationally ranked guard, Koby McEwen played a pivotal role on a CIA Bounce 16U team that won the Silver division championship. Putting on for UPlay was 6’9 Nolan Norain, who showed more of his versatility on a team that’s missing a few role players at the forward position. One of the youngest players at the 17U level, Jamal Murray continued to dazzle with his late game heroics. Now there’s one more name that as a Canadian basketball fan you will be hearing a lot of. Howard Washington.
The clutchness of Jamal Murray should come as no surprise moving forward. He’s a bonifide gamer with a resume to back it up. This weekend at the third session of the EYBL circuit, in Hampton, Virginia; Murray was a top three producer for CIA Bounce. There’s one memory that buzzes in my head on repeat. With the game tied at 54 against BABC, a rebound from Cadet teammate Eddie Ekiyor goes to the hands of Murray for a final shot. Murray brings the ball up and sends off a screen from Dillon Brooks so that he can take his man in isolation. Murray’s first attempt to shift his defender did not make his shot any easier, so he took a few more seconds off the clock and took a step back jump shot from five feet outside the three point line to find nothing but net and get the win 57-54.
CIA Bounce 17U finishes session 3 of EYBL with an overall 8-4 record moving into session 4 in Minnesota next weekend.
There’s already a discussion buzzing over whether Murray’s services will be needed more at the Cadet level or with the Junior Men’s team.
Howard Washington has already solidified himself as a high level point guard in America, but his name is not yet known in Canadian basketball circles; this will change by the end of this summer as he joins the national team programs.
Washington plays for Canisius High School during the school season and is now running with Albany City Rocks for the EYBL circuit.
Cadet and Junior team coaches Dave DeAveiro and Roy Rana have tough decisions ahead on who will fill their guard positions.
Having Murray and Washington on the same line will be greatly beneficial to the Cadets because it will relieve Murray of ball handling responsibility and allow him to do what he does best, score.
CIA Bounce 16U Take Silver Division Championship
Koby McEwen has long been a top producer for all teams he’s played on because of a high motor and slashing ability that gets him to the line often. This weekend there was one game in particular against Team Penny where he went off for 30 points in a win.
One of his attributes that coaches love about him is his compete level and on ball defending. If you’re going into a war, this is the type of guy you want beside you.
UPlay Battles With Depth
UPlay is a few pieces away from doing damage at tournaments throughout the summer. Nolan Norain is playing his best in the post but is in need of a forward or other center that can help rebound and defend in the paint.
The 16U team went 0-3 in the Boo Williams Invitational and will now look to prepare for next weekend in New York at the Gym Rat Challenge.
A bright spot for UPlay was their shooting guard Justin Andrew. His consistency from beyond the arc gave UPlay a shot to win every game. The next step in his development coming into the high school season is to develop a handle that will allow him to create his own shot off the dribble.
This team is loaded with potential that all depends on their rate of development over the summer.
UPlay 15U Sniper On Deck
This team was thoroughly impressive against two EYBL teams, Team Takeover and NY Lightning which ended up in close losses against bigger rosters.
Nick Ciaglia was raining threes and is emerging as another sharp shooter in the 2017 class.
“My shooting makes people step out at me, it helps me make plays for my teammates and opens the floor for my guys.”
More and more prospects are molding their games after Canadian superstars that they’ve watched in the NCAA like Nik Stauskas.
“I model my game after Nik Stauskas, shooting isn’t the only thing that I can do well. I want to be able to provide as much as I can for my team.”
This is another guard heavy team that will have to figure out how to use their speed against bigger teams in transition. Head Coach, Kenold Knight, was frustrated when his guards had opportunities and lane to take that the passed up on.
“We can compete with these teams that are much bigger. We’ve just have to utilize every opportunity where we can use our speed.”
S-Elite Fresh On The Scene
S-Elite played in two divisions with their 15U team and were tested and exposed to a competitive culture that they are steadily adapting to. They are in the same position as UPlay’s 16U team in terms of needing a few more pieces.
It is a guard oriented team with multiple ball handlers and scorers. Between now and the live period in Indiana they hope to fill their roster with a few more pieces that can help defend the post.
Stacked 15U CIA Bounce Finishes 1-2
Some of Canada’s top 2017 and 2018 prospects make up this roster and are each equipped with scoring abilities of their own. The issue for these guys has been team rebounding.
Playing at a high speed and getting up the floor is deterring them from focusing on defensive boards.